Intelligent transport project aims to cut congestion in Exeter

A new smart city project in Exeter will trial intelligent use of data to cut traffic jams across the city.

Exeter City Council and Devon County Council have teamed up with a consortium led by IT services provider NTT Data on the two-year project, which aims to identify solutions that will alleviate traffic congestion.

Announcing the Engaged Smart Transport project last week, NTT Data said it will use real-time traffic and weather sensor data, combined with other data sources such as social media and behavioural information, to better understand the factors affecting people’s travel behaviour.

The partners hope to reveal where and why congestion happens and identify solutions to address these problems.

Amongst other things, NTT Data will provide smart transportation technology from Japan that simulates models on the layout of a city’s roads and junctions, and uses data feeds of traffic flows to forecast and measure congestion, UKAuthority said in a report on the project.

The company will test how well the technology can be adapted to a UK city using available data feeds, including GPS from moving vehicles, and how it performs against existing technologies.

Cities around the world are suffering from the same congestion problems, so I’m delighted that we can apply NTT Data’s proven technologies from Japan to drive innovation in the UK, commented Anna Price, head of public sector at NTT Data. The Engaged Smart Transport project is a first-time investment by NTT Data’s R&D department here in the UK and I’m really thrilled to be applying our Japanese smart transportation expertise to helping the people of Exeter.

We already use a range of traffic management measures across Exeter. However, traffic levels and journey times remain unpredictable, added Cllr Rachel Sutton, lead councillor for Exeter City Development. The Engaged Smart Transport project will see the Council engage with NTT Data and the consortium members, as well as the citizens of Exeter, to help traffic managers cut congestion and enable citizens to make travel choices which save time, are better for the city and the environment.

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